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YMMV / Johnny Test

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  • Americans Hate Tingle: This show has quite the vocal detractors in the United States, especially since Canadian cartoons in general tend to do poorly in the USA anyway. The fact that it was Adored by the Network (despite getting terrible ratings) has been major fuel for it.
  • Anvilicious: Morals are dropped hard:
    • The worst offender is "Johnny Applesauce", with its "petitioning is better than violence" Ass Pulled Aesop despite the show itself being action-packed.
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    • Similarly, "Green Johnny" comes off less like an episode and more like an 11-minute PSA about recycling and going green.
    • Also, "Good Ol' Johnny Test" starts off as a parody of A Charlie Brown Christmas, but becomes quite Anvilicious once the play turns into a big Green Aesop about waste management.
    • It actually starts getting Lampshaded, averted, and subverted in later seasons.note 
  • Ass Pull: One of the more frequent complaints is about the constant out of nowhere plot developments. "Johnny's 100th Episode" is a particular standout as Mr. Mittens and Dark Vegan's reasons for wanting Johnny to come out of his coma come completely out of nowhere.
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  • Base-Breaking Character: Believe it or not, Johnny himself. Some people see him as a Butt-Monkey and/or even somewhat of a woobie due to his horrid father and slightly crapsack life, while others hate him since he can be very whiny or despicable on occasion.
  • Bile Fascination: Some people watch it because of how shoddy it is.
  • Cliché Storm: This show is criticized for rehashing a lot of stock cartoon plots, including its own.
  • Critical Backlash: While the show still maintains a very large hate fanbase, it's slowly starting to fall under this trope as well. While it isn't a bad show, people who watched it after hearing about the immense amount of hate it gets tend to have this reaction. Some episodes are enjoyable, but the show itself just had the unfortunate timing of being a flawed-but-decent cartoon that became Adored by the Network while Cartoon Network was starting to undo its years of Network Decay.
  • Critic-Proof: The show's detractors will tell you that it's one of the worst cartoons ever made; the show itself ran for seven seasons.
  • Crowning Music Of Awesome: Dukey's Johnny Applesauce Song.
  • Darkness-Induced Audience Apathy: "Darkness" is bit of a stretch, but with so many annoying or straight-up unlikable characters doing morally questionable things, it can be rather hard to care about what happens to any of 'em.
  • Deader Than Disco: Believe it or not, the show was actually fairly popular during its first few years – having a higher budget and completely different production team, not to mention Kids' WB! having a hand in its production (alongside the Canadian network Teletoon), probably helped. When Teletoon and Cookie Jar Entertainment took on the sole responsibility of production after Kids WB died out in 2008 (Warner Bros. still owns the character trademarks), the show's quality began to drop severely and it's now one of the most hated cartoons of all time. Even the early seasons are viewed as being not much better in hindsight. Not helping was the fact that it continued production well into 2014, mainly because of CanCon policies requiring Canadian television to be constantly produced in spite of the show's abysmal ratings. The series ended with little fanfare after TV producer David Straiton filed a lawsuit against series creator Scott Fellows for not crediting him as a co-creator for Johnny Test. It's very telling that its season boxsets are sold solely in grocery store bargain bins, and even Cartoon Network (who got the American broadcast rights from The CW after the demise of Kids WB) seemed to despise it in its later years, as almost all of their later promotions for it reek of Our Product Sucks. Today, other than a few projects from James Arnold Taylor (who voiced the title character), and a few Take Thats here and there, it's almost never discussed.
  • Designated Hero: One of the main flaws of the show, especially for the fans themselves, is that it's nearly impossible to root for Johnny sometimes.
  • Ear Worm: "Lemme tell y'all a story 'bout Johnny Applesauce..."
    • The Cleaning Song. Also an in-universe example as Johnny's inability to get the song out of his head is what drives the episode's plot.
  • Ensemble Dark Horse: Sissy is popular with the fans (especially shippers).
    • Susan and Mary are also loved for their Red Oni, Blue Oni personalities. The same can be said for their vampire formes from "Fangs a Lot Johnny". Shame that anybody rarely talks about them.
  • Escapist Character: Johnny's clearly meant to be this for the show's target audience; it... doesn't really work.
  • Evil Is Sexy: Or Cute at the very least. Susan and Mary as vampires, as well as their faux supervillain personas.
  • Fanon Discontinuity: Most of the fandom considers it a "Season 1 only" show.
  • Foe Yay: Bumper does this with Johnny a lot, whether or not Johnny is crossdressing; one such example was in an episode where Johnny tries to change his personality in one of his sisters' machines and, when he's stuck a smooth-talking British personality, Bumper implies to like this version of him a lot.
  • Harsher in Hindsight: One of the major reason many despise this show is mostly because it was aired constantly back to back by Cartoon Network and viewers were just utterly sick of seeing it every day that it was proclaimed a "bad cartoon" for it despite mostly just being average at best. Flash forward some years later and in comes Teen Titans Go which likewise aired daily. However between the two, Johnny Test airings were at least restrained to prime time and weekend slots, letting some of the other shows on the network at least breathe. "TTG" on the other was showcased to ridiculous extremes often time filling up slots for an entire month much to the detriment of fellow shows like Uncle Grandpa, Steven Universe and Mighty Magiswords.
  • Hilarious in Hindsight: Using the "Superhero Effect" to win Susan's heart is a plot reminiscent of the "Mary Jane loves Spiderman" storyline. A storyline kicked out of the canon. Same goes for a comparison to "Lois Lane loves Superman", given the Cosmic Retcon in Flashpoint.
  • Ho Yay:
    • In the episode where the Super Smarty Pants come back, Dukey tries to snap Johnny out of its brainwashing by giving him a speech reminding him of all the good times they've had, ending with "I love you". the speech breaks him out it, and Johnny says "I love you too". And Then there was an episode season 6 episode where Johnny and Dukey make a large sandwich and eat it together, and almost accidentally kiss when they finish it, Lady and the Tramp style, though they just bump each other in the nose.
    • Gil is noticeably always excited to see Johnny, yet when he sees Johnny's sisters, he can't even remember their names. To make matters worse, in an episode it is revealed that in his personal POV of the world, girls don't exist. He once asked Johnny in "Nightmare on Johnny's Street" to have a candle lit dinner with him after Johnny rescues him, with Johnny agreeing and then high fiving Gil.
    • Mr. Black and Mr. White, whose Ho Yay is kind of blatant. In "Guess Who's Coming to Johnny's for Dinner", Mr. Black acts like a divorced wife after he and Mr. White split up due to Mr. Black's bad dancing at a talent competition. They even want to have a vacation to Fiji together.
    • At the end of "Johnny McCool", the twins are seen dreamily sighing at Gil eating a sandwich, which then pans out to Gil dreamily sighing at Steve McCool, which then pans out to show them all having a picnic. The McCool presented is Dark Vegan Iin disguise, though.
  • Iron Woobie: Dukey is pretty much this, still having his cheerful, lovable sense of humor despite being a Butt-Monkey.
  • It's the Same, Now It Sucks!: Some fans are annoyed at the lack of character development in later seasons.
  • Jerkass Woobie: Susan may be a bit of a bitch, but she has a lot to put up with, what with Bling-Bling constantly trying to date her.
    • From the Smarty Pant's point of view, Johnny is a Bastard Boyfriend who only uses them to impress another girl.
  • Memetic Mutation: WHIPCRACK and guitar riff, because of how the show abuses these two sound effects every chance it gets. In this compilation of whipcracks (181 in one episode), half of the comment section is people joking that the whipcracks are actually from recordings of the animators being forced to work on the show.
  • Misblamed:
    • A meta-example. Haters sometimes use this show to prove that all Canadian animation is horrible and should stop being produced. What many people forget is that creator Scott Fellows, James Arnold Taylor (Johnny's voice actor), and many of the show's writers, are Americans.
    • Everyone points their hatred for the show as just being because it's similar to Dexter's Laboratory. While that was a point of contention when it originally premiered, a good number of viewers were willing to look past it, as it was different enough not to be a carbon copy, and even welcomed it due to said similarities since Dexter had long since stopped airing. No, the true reason why it was hated was because Cartoon Network and Teletoon went overboard on broadcasting it, especially when it was used as a replacement for DC Nation in the U.S (which also suffered from CN's wonky programming schedule, and would ironically premiere the next overplayed series, Teen Titans Go!). By this point, viewers had gotten sick of the constant airings and detractors started listing any faults they could find to make it look like it was one of the worst cartoons ever.
  • Narm: Rampant after the first season; sometimes goes with the Narm Charm.
  • One-Scene Wonder:
    • She-Johnny appeared for about a second in the very first episode, but that was enough to grant an awful lot of fanart; in fact, look it up on DeviantArt or a related site.
    • Vampire Susan and Mary, especially among the anti-Twilight fans. The gothic dresses they wear, and their creepy, yet charming dialogue helps.
  • Only the Creator Does It Right: The first season had a completely different production team from the rest of the series, and while considered average, it's still held in higher regard than the rest of the series.
  • Periphery Demographic: Due to Dukey and, well, furries.
  • The Scrappy:
    • Johnny's dad for being such an authoritarian to his family; even the writers don't seem to like him a lot.
    • Bling Bling Boy to some, as his pining for Susan is a lot more creepy than funny.
  • Seasonal Rot: Season 1 was average at best, despite the potential it showed, but things went downhill in Seasons 2 and 3 (although they are enjoyable due to their So Bad, It's Good value). Season 4 saw a slight improvement, but the damage was already done by then, and Johnny Test lost more fans and ratings with every season.
  • Shallow Parody: Quite a few, considering how little originality the show has.
    • One notable example is "The Hungry Games", which is yet another racing episode, so the government-orchestrated fight between minors has been downgraded to... a race. A race for a pizza. Not just any pizza, but the last pizza in town. And the episode ends with Johnny giving a preachy lecture about sharing.
    • "Johnny Re-Animated" has Dawg & Bone, a parody of Johnny Test itself.
  • Snark Bait: Due to the already mentioned So Bad, It's Good aspect.
  • So Bad, It's Good: More than a few fans will admit this.
  • So Okay, It's Average: Likewise an opinion to some who don't vocally hate it. It's not a bad show, but there's nothing all that special about it either.
  • Squick:
    • Johnny and Sissy look like siblings. Aside from that most likely unintentional instance, there's the writers' apparent fondness for Screw Yourself and everything related to it.
    • The scene after the beginning minutes of "Johnnyitis" in which Johnny, desperate to become sick in order to have an excuse to miss a big history test, eats a sick woman's used tissue. Said woman also had snot draining from her nose.
  • Suspiciously Similar Song: The show's second theme song to Green Day's "American Idiot".
  • They Changed It, Now It Sucks!:
    • As of Season 5, Dukey now has the same voice actor as Johnny's dad, which proved an unpopular decision at best; the same goes for the change of Mary's voice actress.
    • Season 2 is this, but that's mostly due to some fans being put off by the shift in animation after Season 1.
  • They Copied It, So It Sucks!: The show shares more than a few similarities to Dexter's Laboratory, and over time, people started to notice:
    • Susan and Mary Test are obviously the Dexters of the show, being redheaded genius children with a laboratory in their house.
    • Johnny is like Dee Dee, since both of them are Dumb Blonde annoyances who constantly cause trouble for their genius siblings.
    • Their parents are kind of like if one took Dexter's mom and dad and swapped their personalities, and then Flanderized them: Johnny's Dad is a major neat-freak, while Dexter's Mom had her moments of this; Johnny's Mom is the head of the house and always working, while Dexter's Dad was just the head of the household.
    • Also, a female in the main cast is bothered by an Abhorrent Admirer, who is another nerdy genius child with their own laboratory; Bling-Bling Boy is the Mandark of the show.
    • Dukey can also be compared to Monkey, both being animals who have gained unusual abilities because of the genius children, Dukey's being talking while Monkey becomes a superhero.
    • Let's not forget that there was also an episode of Dexter's Lab called "Dexter's Lab", in which Dexter finds a lost dog that he teaches to speak English.
    • Not helping the show's case, the concept for Johnny Test was supposedly created in 1995. In other words, shortly after the first episode of Dexter's Laboratory aired in February 1995.
    • One episode had Johnny and Dukey being transported to a genderbent dimension. It's highly likely it was created in the wake of the popularity of the Fionna & Cake episodes of Adventure Time.
  • They Wasted a Perfectly Good Character:
    • What non-fans tend to think of Dukey.
    • Same for Susan and Mary.
    • Essentially, all major characters get this treatment in favor of Johnny.
  • They Wasted a Perfectly Good Plot: Due to the above-explained reason, and the borderline lack of A Day in the Limelight for supporting characters.
  • Uncanny Valley: Speed McCool and Monkey, although that's probably intentional, considering the two are based on old action cartoons.
    • The poor flash animation (starting in season two and getting worse from there) and bizarre, strangely exaggerated facial expressions (along with most characters' lack of pupils) are surprisingly unsettling; none of this is helped by the unappealing (or just plain ugly in some cases) character designs.
  • Vindicated by History: Now that the constant airings for JT have ceased (it shows up occasionally on Boomerang), the vitriol has loosened up a bit. Say what you want about the show, but at the least the complete hatred didn't start until after CN started overplaying it, which, as you can see on this page, was the main complaint against it. To many before that happened, it was an average enough comedy series. After it finally ended, it got replaced with something that many viewers considered far worse, Teen Titans Go!, which had much more unlikable characters, stupid plots, and is constantly airing around the clock, to the point detractors would rather go back to this series. When some viewers compared the two shows, they admitted that Johnny Test at least tries to be likable and funny, and was a much more bearable watch than TTG.
  • We're Still Relevant, Dammit!:
    • Probably the worst example of this would be the YouTube (or rather, "Snoobtube") episode... in 2010.
      • In fact, looking up the website redirects you to Coincidentally, Nick is also known for trying to be hip with the kids.
  • What an Idiot!: Johnny's idea to replace toy cereal prizes with real, lethal laser guns for kids in Johnny-O's isn't a good idea, as you could probably tell.
  • The Woobie:
    • Dukey, who always seems to get frozen in a block of ice or turned to stone. Also, the episode "Bathtime for Johnny", where Johnny "forgot" his birthday and he sobbed his heart out for nearly the whole episode. Last but not least, most people go out of their way in the show to point out how ugly he is.
    • Mary and Susan, on occasion.


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